Texas Construction Guy Influencer Is Really a Marketing Campaign
Omar Madani, a real construction worker, was used to sell coffee.
This story has been updated.
A Texas dad who became an internet sensation was really being used as a marketing campaign.
Social media exploded this week when a Twitter user with with the handle @barbzlovescarbs wrote she had schooled her construction worker dad about what it meant to be an "influencer" on social media.
"Pssh, I could do that," came his reply. That post is now gone, and it appears the user was not the man's daughter.
Instead, @justaconstructionguy, is a marketing campaign started by Austin's Cuvee Coffee owner Mike McKim, using local contractor Omar Madani. He started out with 75 followers. Then came the Twitter post. The meme account @middleclassfancy reposted his site. Then his antics were reposted all over Instagram.
Now he has more than 380,000 followers.
McKim posted a note Thursday on his company's site after the fake daughter's post blew up social media.
"As much as I would like to say that the goal was to get Omar hundreds of thousands of followers, the reality is that we thought if we got him to 1,000 it would be a home run. None of us ever imagined that he could go from 75 followers one day to 325k (and counting). The night that it started to blow up, Omar actually sent a text asking, iis 100,000 followers good?' That’s just who this guy really is."
McKim told BuzzFeed he didn't know who posted the barbzlovescarbs note.
The Instagram photos of Madani show him enjoying coffee and cigars. There are stills of him in his reflector vest, on a job site. There is one image of him sporting a utility belt with a towering construction crane in the background, which seems to be growing from the top of his head.
Another shows him on a different job site, using an acetylene torch to light his cigar. "This is literally the coolest image I've ever seen," a follower posted.
His audience is clearly appreciative.
"The only lifestyle influencer we need," wrote a fan. "I'm obsessed," wrote another.
A mug manufacturer, posting on a photo of Madani holding a coffee thermos, wrote, "Interested in a promotion with our product? Think it could be a good fit!"
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